Non-profit

Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL)

Website:

www.techandciviclife.org

Location:

CHICAGO, IL

Tax ID:

47-2158694

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2018):

Revenue: $1,044,134
Expenses: $841,577
Assets: $795,279

Formation:

2012

Type:

Center-Left Election Reform Advocacy Group

Founders:

Tiana Epps-Johnson

Donny Bridges

Whitney May

The Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) is a Chicago, Illinois-based center-left election reform advocacy group formed in 2012. The organization pushes for left-of-center voting policies and election administration. It has a wide reach into local elections offices across the nation and is funded by many left-of-center funding organizations such as the Skoll Foundation, the Democracy Fund, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation. [1] [2] [3]

Background

The Center for Technology and Civic Life was founded in 2012 by Tiana Epps-Johnson, Whitney May, and Donny Bridges. The three co-founders have a long history in election policy with May being a former election official. The goal of the organization at its founding was to use data to streamline election administration and increase turnout in American elections. The organization has several programs and initiatives focused on election data and outreach to local election officials. [4]

Activity

The Center for Technology and Civic Life has two main programming areas: “civic data” (a term it uses for election and candidate information), and training for election officials. CTCL has assembled resources to collect data from nearly every local election office; covering candidates on the ballot for each race, information describing those offices, and contact information for elected officials. The organization boasts that more than 250 million voters have accessed its data and that CTCL acts as a major supplier of ballot data for tech giants Facebook and Google. Additionally, Rock the Vote, the Women Donors Network, and the Voting Information Project have all used data provided by CTCL. [5]

The Center for Tech and Civic Life also hosts an annual conference for election officials and left-of-center election policy activists. Left-leaning advocacy organizations represented at the CTCL’s 2019 conference included the Democracy Fund, e.thePeople/League of Women Voters, Metric Geometry & Gerrymandering Group, We Vote, MapLight, Democracy Works, and the National Institute on Money in Politics. [6]

The center has a network of hundreds of election offices across the nation and works to train election officials. CTCL provides courses to election offices and travels to offices (for a fee of $5,000) to help local officials collect data, build websites, and develop messages to motivate voters. The center also operates ElectionTools.org, which provides free templates and forms for use by election officials. [7]

The Center for Technology and Civic Life has been active in the wake of the 2020 Coronavirus Pandemic as part of an effort by the Democracy Fund to move voting in 2020 to mail-in elections. CTCL has held remote trainings and provides resources on voting by mail for election officials. [8]

Funding and Support

CTCL has received financial and other assistance from several center-left foundations and advocacy organizations.

In April 2020 the Skoll Foundation awarded CTCL a $1.5 million grant. [9] And for donation years 2015 through 2017 the charitable recordkeeping service FoundationSearch reports more than $1.3 million in total donations to CTCL from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, as well as at least $690,000 from the Democracy Fund to CTCL, and another $10,000 from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund to CTCL. [10]

On its “Key Funders and Partners” web page, the Center for Tech and Civic Life also credits these organizations as having “supported” its work:[11]

Google

Facebook

Rock the Vote

Center for Civic Design

Women Donors Network

Center for Democracy and Technology

The Voting Information Project (project of Democracy Works)

References

  1. “The Center for Technology and Civic Life”. Democracy Fund. Accessed May 11, 2020.  https://www.democracyfund.org/portfolio/entry/the-center-for-technology-and-civic-life ^
  2. Grego, Suzana. “Skoll Foundation Announces 2020 Awards for Social Entrepreneurship.” Skoll Foundation. April 15, 2020. Accessed May 19, 2020. https://skoll.org/2020/04/15/skoll-foundation-announces-2020-awards-for-social-entrepreneurship-clone/ ^
  3. Data compiled by FoundationSearch.com subscription service, a project of Metasoft Systems, Inc., from forms filed with the Internal Revenue Service. Queries conducted May 19, 2020. ^
  4. “Center for Tech and Civic Life”. Skoll. Accessed May 11, 2020. https://skoll.org/organization/center-for-tech-and-civic-life/ ^
  5. “Civic Data”. Center for Technology and Civic Life. Accessed May 11, 2020. https://www.techandciviclife.org/our-work/civic-data/ ^
  6. “2019 Attendee Bios” Center for Tech and Civic Life.  Accessed May 11, 2020. https://tiana-eppsjohnson-49eh.squarespace.com/ballot2019/bios ^
  7. “Election officials”. Center for Technology and Civic Life. Accessed May 11, 2020.  https://www.techandciviclife.org/our-work/election-officials/ ^
  8. Roje, Philip. “Virus-Proofing the Vote: Democracy Funders Respond to COVID-19” Inside Philanthropy. Accessed May 11, 2020. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2020/4/1/virus-proofing-the-vote-democracy-funders-respond-to-covid-19 ^
  9. Grego, Suzana. “Skoll Foundation Announces 2020 Awards for Social Entrepreneurship.” Skoll Foundation. April 15, 2020. Accessed May 19, 2020. https://skoll.org/2020/04/15/skoll-foundation-announces-2020-awards-for-social-entrepreneurship-clone/ ^
  10. Data compiled by FoundationSearch.com subscription service, a project of Metasoft Systems, Inc., from forms filed with the Internal Revenue Service. Queries conducted May 19, 2020. ^
  11. “Key Funders and Partners.” Center for Tech and Civic Life. Accessed May 19, 2020. https://www.techandciviclife.org/key-funders-and-partners/ ^

Supported Movements

  1. Vote Early Day
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: January - December
  • Tax Exemption Received: March 1, 2015

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2018 Jan Form 990 $1,044,134 $841,577 $795,279 $61,760 N $738,060 $304,459 $19 $97,850
    2017 Jan Form 990 $970,937 $1,002,928 $564,557 $84,595 N $272,161 $698,757 $19 $94,004
    2016 Jan Form 990 $1,013,853 $501,900 $552,398 $40,445 N $666,904 $346,942 $7 $83,759 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL)

    233 N MICHIGAN AVE STE 1800
    CHICAGO, IL 60601-5802